Founder and manager director of Design Connect, London
Trained in 3D design in Belfast and Germany, Michael Thomson established his international, strategic consulting business, ‘Design Connect’ in London in 1995.
A seasoned international strategist and facilitator, Michael uses design-led methods to build genuine insight that leads to effective action for clients across a variety of sectors, including manufacturing, media, creative industries, finance and the public sector. Clients include Channel 4, Dyson and the City Councils of Bath and Bristol (UK), Tupperware (USA) and Samsung C+T, (S. Korea).
Working in the Creative Industries sector, Michael has also shaped the direction of many of Europe’s leading design companies and is a Consulting Director on Strategy to London and Seoul-based strategic design consultancy tangerine.
Michael has consulted and advised on the development of national and regional design policies for the UK, Asia, Iceland, Ireland, Italy and the Middle East and in 2008 he was the Programme Director for the first international conference on design policy, ‘Shaping the Global Design Agenda’ held in Turin.
As President of the Bureau of European Design Associations (BEDA) from 2007-2009, he was instrumental in persuading the European Commission to initiate its ongoing work on the development of design policy at the European level. He is a former advisor on the Creative Industries to the Secretary of State for Arts and Media in Vienna.
From 2001-2005, Michael served on the Board of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid) and in February 2008 he was named by the UK’s journal, ‘Design Week’ as one of the UK’s top fifty most influential people in design.
In August 2009 Michael was invited to sit on the International Advisory Committee for Seoul World Design Capital 2010 and in September, he travelled to the Shunde region in China as a member of the recently formed UK China Partners